Classic Cuts: NYC Barbershops
by Jeremy Lehrer, 01/30/2013
Photo: Alexander Thompson
134-11 Hillside Ave., 718-658-5605, Richmond Hill, Queens
The Hustle is a destination for those who want a meticulous cut and shave, done by six barbers who adore what they do. The collective ambience of satisfied customers, meaningful conversation and camaraderie has built up here since the shop's opening in 2005, giving The Hustle a communal, friendly vibe. In addition to classic and more edgy haircuts, barbers here skillfully render edges, fades, tapers and shaved designs that tend toward the abstract and graffiti influences (as opposed to team logos); if you want a shaved design, call ahead to book the right barber for an appointment. At $16, a haircut and a shave combo is eminently affordable. Owner Charly Hustle has been cutting hair since 1992 and thoughtfully rhapsodizes on the barber's role. "Barbers are psychiatrists," he says. "We definitely help men with their confidence, and we hear their problems. You can walk into a shop feeling like crap but walk out feeling like a million bucks. We offer a service that completes a man." The decor here is sports-inspired, including an athlete's bench and two seats from Shea Stadium; the Hustle also has a line of T-shirts and hats. The shop's motto is a paean to the common man: "No hustle, no profit."